Opponents of the Thai Prime Minister Abhisit have filed a motion of no-confidence against the prime minister, foreign minister, finance minister, deputy finance minister, interior minister and deputy interior minister.
This comes a day after the opposition Phuea Thai Party — supporters of former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra — filed a separate impeachment motion against Abhisit, accusing him of taking power illegitimately and supporting months of anti-Thaksin protests that culminated in last year's weeklong siege of Bangkok's airports.
Although neither motion is expected to topple the current administration, these incidents show that the political drama that has engulfed Thai politics since Thaksin Shinawatra was ousted from power by the military in 2006 is not likely to end soon.
A debate on the motions is tentatively scheduled for March 26, Senate Speaker Prasobsuk Boondej said.
Prime Minister Abhisit came to power in December after the court rulings of election fraud ousted a coalition of Thaksin’s allies, amidst a wave of street protests by the yellow-shirted anti-Thaksin People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD), who occupied the Prime Minister’s office and Bangkok’s international airport.
By democratic standards, Mr Abhisit’s right to lead the government is suspect. In his capacity as the leader of the Democratic Party since 2005, he has not won the electoral mandate to rule in the two general elections since. He boycotted the general elections of 2006, and was defeated in the 2007 elections. Instead, the 2005 elections were won by Thaksin, and the 2008 elections by a coalition of Thaksin’s allies. Mr Abhisit was elected Prime Minister by parliamentary vote, after his Democrat Party formed a coalition with defecting supporters of the previous government.
"We can prove that all of them have done something illegal and that they have mismanaged the country," opposition member of parliament Pirapan Palasuk said of those mentioned in the motion of no-confidence.
The opposition says it hopes to demonstrate to the public that the current government is not fit to manage the country.
International Herald Tribune, Foes file no-confidence motion against Thai PM , 12 March 2009, http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2009/03/12/asia/AS-Thailand-Politics.php
Reuters, Thai opposition tables censure motion against PM, 12 March 2009, http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSTRE52B2UJ20090312
Times Online, The charmer making a mess of his country , 13 march 2009, http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/a...
International Herald Tribune, Deposed Thai prime minister vows to fight on , 12 March 2009, http://www.iht.com/articles/2009/03/12/asia/thaksin.php